LGBTQ Girls Are Fueling the School-to-Prison Pipeline
Date:  05-16-2018

LGBTQ girls of color are particularly singled out for harsher punishment
From Rewire News:

In 2015, the University of Arizona interviewed LGBT students across three states asking them about their experiences with over-discipline and school pushout. In response, one student said, “The teachers … they thought we were selling weed in school, they thought that me and her were both selling weed ‘cause like, the way we were dressing, ‘cause we were the only girls at that middle school that dressed like boys. So it was like ‘now we’re bad.’”

New research out of Princeton University confirms years of such anecdotal and empirical evidence: Girls, especially those of color, who experience same-sex attraction face disproportionate levels of discipline at school. And that over-discipline is a direct part of the school-to-prison pipeline. Joel Mittleman, a doctoral candidate at Princeton University, analyzed data earlier this year from the Fragile Families and Childhood Wellbeing Study (FFCWS), a longitudinal study that has tracked the births, lives, and outcomes of nearly 5,000 U.S. children born between 1998 and 2000. The FFCWS is the only longitudinal study of this kind to also look at respondents’ sexual orientation. This particular survey determines respondents’ same-sex and different-sex attraction by asking the youth—now age 15—if they have “ever liked a girl as more than just a friend?” and “ever liked a boy as more than just a friend?” Two percent only said yes to ever liking someone of the same sex as more than a friend, and 8 percent said yes to both questions. (The majority of those answering yes to being attracted to both were girls.)

Mittleman’s analysis revealed that girls who said yes to experiencing any same-sex attraction faced far higher rates of discipline than the girls who only reported opposite-sex attraction. There was no difference among the rates of discipline for the boys. Continue reading >>>